Sotah, Chapter Nine, Mishnah Eleven



This mishnah teaches about what happened when the Sanhedrin, the high court in Jerusalem, ceased to function


Mishnah Eleven

When the Sanhedrin ceased [to function], song ceased from the places of feasting, as it is said, “They drink their wine without song” (Isaiah 24:9).



Towards the end of the Second Temple period, the Sanhedrin ceased to function. According to Albeck, it ceased adjudicating capital crimes.  From that time on, there were no more songs sung at places of feasting.  Later Talmudic commentators and halakhic authorities say that this refers only to songs of love between people.  Songs of love towards God did not cease, and hence it was always customary to sing songs in praise of God.